Boston Red Sox: Who will make 30-man Opening Day roster?

Red Sox infielders Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
Red Sox infielders Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

Red Sox bullpen

For the bullpen, the majority are locks. Workman will return to the bullpen as the closer. Guys like Barnes, Brasier, Taylor, Hernandez, and Hembree will also pitch for Boston in 2020 if none of them opt out or get hurt.

Walden is also probably considered a lock after pitching in 70 games with a 3.81 ERA in 2019. He started last season in the minors so there is a slight chance he doesn’t make the big league squad out of the gate if others outperform him in Spring Training 2. He gave up 3 ER in 4.2 innings combined in three games during Spring Training 1.

Brewer has less of a chance of making the bullpen compared to Walden, but still has a good shot. He spent a portion of the 2019 season in Triple A, but did come out of the bullpen 58 times, finishing with a 4.12 ERA. In Spring Training this year, he made five appearances, going 2-0 after giving up 2 ER in 8.1 innings After a strong showing in Fort Myers, Brewer will look to stay hot in Spring Training 2.

The other two spots in the bullpen could change by the time Spring Training 2 ends in July. Right now, it looks like the newly acquired duo of Brice and Osich have the best shot of making the bullpen for Opening Day. Brice made five appearances in Spring Training 1, giving up 0 ER in 6.2 IP combined while Osich made four appearances, giving up just 3 H and 1 ER in 4.2 IP.

Other options for the Red Sox include Chris Mazza, Matt Hall, Jeffrey Springs, and Mike Shawaryn. In Spring Training 1, Mazza made three appearances (1 start), giving up 7 ER in 4.2 IP. Hall gave up 4 ER in 3 IP total (three games). Spring had four appearances (one start) and gave up 6 ER in 6 IP. Mike Shawaryn gave up 0 ER in 2.1 IP.

The Red Sox have many arms available that have a chance to pitch out of the bullpen when play returns. Either way, with roster spots decreasing from 30 to 26 by the end of the first month of the season, playing for bullpen spots is only going to get more competitive.

It would be more than likely that the Red Sox carry two fewer bullpen arms by the time September rolls around. Players like Walden, Brewer, Brice, and Osich would likely fight for the remaining spots as the Red Sox would have to send at least one or two of them down to the minors. A lot will be determined in the next couple of months.